By Rory Carroll
(Reuters) – Nike has unveiled new NBA uniforms for the 2017-2018 season that dispense with traditional ‘home’ and ‘away’ team designations.
The home team will instead pick from four primary uniforms to be worn at all home games and visiting teams will choose a contrasting uniform within their own assortment.
White ‘Association’ uniforms will replace the typical home jersey, while the ‘Icon’ version uses the team’s primary color and replaces the road uniforms.
Nike, which has replaced Adidas as the NBA’s uniform supplier, will reveal the two remaining uniforms in the coming months.
The world’s No. 1 footwear maker said on Tuesday that it employed 3D-body maps of players, including heat and sweat maps, to design cooler, lighter uniforms for players to wear during the NBA’s grueling 82-game season.
NBA players tested early versions of the uniforms and provided feedback that prompted Nike to evolve the designs in ways that included moving the armhole, neck and side seams to eliminate distractions for athletes, the company said.
“The mental advantage of a quality uniform is priceless,” Cavaliers guard Kyrie Irving said in a press release.
“The fact that Nike listened to all of our feedback while developing the new NBA uniforms speaks volumes. I’m excited for the new fit and feel,” he said.
The most significant change comes to the back shoulder of the uniform where Nike designers altered the construction for an improved fit, the company said.
The uniform is comprised of a combination of Alpha Yarns and recycled polyester, with each athlete uniform representing approximately 20 recycled PET (polyethylene terephthalate) bottles.
“Not only does this yarn blend match Nike’s broad commitment to sustainability, it also removes moisture more quickly than previous NBA uniforms, wicking sweat 30-percent faster than current NBA uniforms,” Nike said in a release.
Nike will also unveil new tights and socks to complement the uniforms and provide a seamless look for the athletes, it said.
(Reporting by Rory Carroll; editing by Ken Ferris)